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112 United Nations Press Release

BAL/480 (extract), NEW YORK, 19 May 1949

At New York, it became apparent that if Albania and Greece would agree as to the territorial question so far as it was linked up with the question of boundaries, all four Governments would be ready to sign the draft accord[1]. In view of the difference between Albania and Greece arising from the demand by Albania[2], I suggested an amended draft agreement between Albania and Greece. A copy of this amended draft agreement is issued with this statement.

The amended agreement reproduced all the clauses of the agreement which the representatives of the two countries were willing to sign in Paris, but additional phrases were added, notably in Clause 4, from which it is reasonably plain that there would be an acceptance by both Albania and Greece of the existing boundaries, which, in my opinion, should, in the circumstances, have been a sufficient assurance to Albania as well as to Greece.

Ten days ago, the Greek Government accepted the formula in substance. However, the Albanian government, although furnished with the Committee's revised draft of May 6, has not yet replied to the new formula although the representative of Albania has today insisted that his Government has not rejected the amended draft. I was of the opinion that the replies of Bulgaria and Yugoslavia would be favorable provided that Albania accepted the new draft.

The Conciliators are now faced by the fact that as the General Assembly has completed its session, the Conciliation Committee cannot continue to function in its present capacity. I feel that the Government of Albania has had ample time since May 6 to accept, reject or amend the new formula and also that the new formula sufficiently assures the existing boundaries between Albania and Greece.

The new formula is a satisfactory one and should be acceptable in substance to Albania as it has been accepted in substance by Greece. While Albania's final reply has not been furnished, I sincerely hope that the Governments themselves will reach final agreement, and for that purpose, the good offices of the United Nations would always be available.

I am sending a copy of this statement to the United Nations Special Committee on the Balkans which is also required by Assembly resolution to carry out broad conciliatory functions between the four Balkan powers concerned. Having regard to the progress which the Conciliation Committee was able to make and the very close approximation to full agreement which has already been reached, an early attempt to complete its work might well be successful.

[1] See Document 109.

[2] Albania's demand was that Greece should formally recognise the existing boundaries between the two countries as definitive.

[AA : A1838, 852/10/6/1, I]
Last Updated: 11 September 2013
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